Pokemon Heroes

Movie review by
Nell Minow, Common Sense Media
Pokemon Heroes Movie Poster Image
Below-average for series and too violent for younger kids.
  • G
  • 2003
  • 80 minutes

Parents say

age 5+
Based on 4 reviews

Kids say

age 7+
Based on 12 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Educational Value

Primarily to entertain rather than inform. The city of Altomare looks very much like Venice, Italy, and introduces a city of canals and splendid architecture.

Positive Messages

An opening song encourages everyone to fulfill their destinies. "Everyone has a dream that fills their hearts." Ash's dream is presented as his quest to become the world's greatest Pokemon master. As in all the Pokemon movies, villains are defeated by the forces of good.

Positive Role Models & Representations


The human Pokemon heroes exhibit traits that serve them well: courage, selflessness, quick-thinking, loyalty, and empathy. They are aided by the troops of good Pokemon. Villains are always greedy, selfish, and ultimately defeated. Female characters hold their own with the males and are the villains in this movie. There's a minimal effort to acknowledge ethnic diversity.


Violence & Scariness

Waves and/or funnels of water crash and threaten the beautiful city of Altomare more than once. Characters are submerged, struggle, but finally escape the raging waters. Two sea creature-guardians (Latios and Latias) are in jeopardy for much of the film; their screeches are piercing. The frequent cartoon action includes: thunderbolts, chases, force fields, falls, and electric shocks. "The Defense Mechanism of Altomare," described as the most powerful weapon ever built, subdues its victims, goes out of control, and threatens everyone. Evil-looking fossils appear and wreak havoc on the humans, the Pokemon, and most terribly on Latias and Latios, the guardians of the city.  

Sexy Stuff


Some female characters, most notably the villains, wear revealing clothing (bare midriffs and backs, tight-fitting). Some very mild flirting.



The Pokemon films continue to be an effective marketing tool for all Pokemon products -- games, cards, toys, etc.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Pokemon Heroes, the fifth film in the Pokemon seriesstays true to the franchise's focus on cartoon action. There are lots of battles, many characters in danger from one-dimensional villains and their weapons, and the ongoing threat of a beautiful, peaceful city's destruction. No one is seriously injured, but some characters are knocked out for a time, and one central legendary "guardian" vanishes, supposedly giving his life to save his city -- it's never spoken of as a death, but as if he is now in some other, better place. Positive messages about fulfilling dreams and destiny, as well as the ever-present "good triumphs over evil," get some attention and frame the almost nonstop physical conflict.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byFrostyNaPali September 4, 2020

review from 9 year old

It's cool and mysterious :)
Adult Written byHolly R. January 3, 2018

A really good entry in the movie canon

I'm a huge fan of Pokemon and have been since it's American debut 20 year's ago this year (it came out here 2 years after it did in Japan) and ha... Continue reading
Teen, 16 years old Written byGamingwithash November 1, 2017

This movie is the best movie ever

I love this movie so much even though latios dies still it's awesome the animation and the acting skills are amazing
Teen, 15 years old Written byRandomnessisran... August 31, 2017

Not good for younger kids

This movie is to old for younger kids because of team rockets sisters Annie and Oakley they try to destroy the city and they killed off Latios. I was so disappo... Continue reading

What's the story?

In POKEMON HEROES, Pokemon master Ash and pals Brock and Misty visit the Venice-like city called Altomare, which is guarded by two legendary Pokemons named Latia and Latios. They are dolphin-shaped creatures who can make themselves invisible and disguise themselves as human and who communicate in annoying fingernails-on-blackboard screeches. Meanies Annie and Oakley, teen girls with midriff-baring outfits, steal the jewel that is the source of Altomare's power.

Is it any good?

This lackluster fifth Pokemon movie has some briefly lovely background paintings, but other than that it's below average for the series. It's too violent and confusing for younger kids and doesn't have enough character, plot, or visual interest to engage older kids.

There are three reasons that children are drawn to characters like Pokemon. First is the perennial appeal of characters who appear to be weak but have hidden sources of power. Kids, who live in a world of powerful giants are drawn to stories of transformations and secret strength. Second, the many facts to memorize about Pokemon give children a chance to master something, giving them a sense of power and competence. Third, as children start to develop social skills, fads like Pokemon provide a shared language that can help those conversations and imaginative games get started.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about why Pokemon movies are popular. Are they just a marketing tool for selling Pokemon cards, games and toys? Or are they fun on their own? 

  • How do you think Pokemon Heroes compares with other Pokemon movies? 

  • Families might want to look at photographs of Venice, which inspired the imaginary city of Altomare.

Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love animation and action games

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

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